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 Port Updates

 Daily Port Update

Subject:CORPUS CHRISTI Port Conditions
Date:Thursday, August 31, 2017
Notice:The Captain of the Port (COTP), Sector Corpus Christi, set Port Condition ZULU (MSIB 05-17) at midnight August 24th for the entire COTP Area of Responsibility and this remains in effect with exception of Port of Brownsville and now the Corpus Christi Inner Harbor, as noted below. No vessel movements are permitted without specific permission of the Captain of the Port. That does not mean no vessel movements are allowed; it means that verbal permission must be requested and granted on a case-by-case basis before movements are allowed.

US Coast Guard report:
The COTP Corpus Christi has implemented Port Condition Modified ZULU on Tuesday afternoon for the Port of Corpus Christi Inner Harbor, only.

The COTP Corpus Christi posted Port Condition Update: Waterway Openings after Hurricane Harvey (MSIB 08-17) today at 1300 hours. This confirms in writing the opening of the Port of Brownsville and the limited opening of the Port of Corpus Christi under the previously reported Modified ZULU.

Modified ZULU for the Port of Corpus Christi Inner Harbor allows tug and barges with drafts not exceeding 20-feet currently in the Inner Harbor to transit freely within the Inner Harbor with no requirements to seek the COTP permission to move.

Mariners are to proceed with caution as navigational ATONS may be missing or off-station. All other portions of the Captain of the Port Sector Corpus Christi remain at Port Condition ZULU unless they have already been cleared by the COTP.

Mariners are reminded the Corpus Christi Inner Harbor security zone, 33 CFR 165.809, remains in effect during severe weather. Recreational, commercial fishing and passenger vessels are not permitted to enter the security zone without permission from the COTP. Vessels must have prearranged agreements to enter the Inner Harbor as a safe refuge.

USCG inspectors were on site yesterday along with the salvage team to inspect the grounded drill ship. The last report is that the ship is now out of the ship channel, but a crane has been reported to be missing from the drill ship. There were divers trying to survey the drill ship but this was cancelled due to dangerously excessive currents at the location. They will reattempt the dive tomorrow morning. The salvage plan is dependent upon the divers' report. The Aransas-Corpus Christi Pilots advised that they are not hopeful to safely move deep-draft ships past that location, but they are still discussing possible alternatives. Surveys of the entire Corpus Christi region will be completed by dark today, except for a short stretch of the ICWW, which will be completed first thing in the morning.

Today's plan is to send several boats up the ICWW to work on the Victoria Channel and once completed there they will be working north and east on the ICWW. Another contracted boat shall arrive at Matagorda Bay late tonight to survey the entire Matagorda Bay Ship Channel. They will work 24/7 until they complete the entire channel.

This afternoon the COTP approved running a test towboat with 2 barges, up the ICWW from Brownsville to Corpus Christi.
There were some setbacks today on repairing electronic ATONs because several helicopters had to be sent to Houston to assist in their SAR efforts, however it is still expected there will be sufficient ATON resources to permit safe navigation.

USCG Punch List to reopen the Port of Corpus Christi:
1. Channel surveys must be completed. First surveys for the profile lines; then cross-section surveys to search for any restrictions or dredge requirements. Restrictions will be set as needed to the minimum requirements necessary to move traffic.
2. Identify any obstructions and implement restrictions and/or make plans to remove obstructions (grounded drill ship).
3. Finish conducting ATON verifications, which has already started.
4. Each facility needs to do their port-storm assessments and confirm that safe operations can be conducted to handle deep-draft vessels. The USCG will begin review of those submissions and implement facility inspections as possible.
5. Vessel Priority List needed to be established by PCT members and submitted to the COTP for approval (initially done).
6. Best case scenario for port re-opening: Friday morning for daylight movements only. This is only a best estimate!

US Army Corps of Engineers: Most of the surveys have been finished and the data compiled for the Corpus Christi Ship Channel. Some shoaling has been found and draft restrictions will be necessary until dredging restores the channel to project depths.

Emergency contact numbers-
USCG Sector Corpus Christi:
LCDR Pickering, Cellular phone 361-244-4784
Planning Section 361-767-2529
Operations Section 361-767-2527
Search & Rescue 361-933-5007

Port of Corpus Christi:
Emergency Command Center 361-885-6612

Matthew Peterson, Manager
Moran Shipping Agencies, Inc.
400 Mann Street, Suite 907
Corpus Christi, TX  78401
Tel: 361-884-0903  Fax: 361-887-6132  Mbl: 361-813-1649

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Notice posted on Thursday, August 31, 2017

For quality assurance purposes please note well that while the above information is regularly vetted for accuracy it is not intended to replace the local knowledge or expertise pertaining to port conditions of our marine operations personnel. Port précis should always be verified by contacting the corresponding marine department of a particular location for the most up-to-date information.